Speaking today (Monday 6 April) welcoming the Department of Justice’s financial investment in the Mourne Mountain Rescue Team, South Down SDLP Westminster candidate, Margaret Ritchie said: “I am pleased that the Department of Justice has now made an important contribution of £18,000 to the Mourne Mountain Rescue Team through a co-ordinated bid from several rescue agencies in Northern Ireland which it is hoped will enable this commendable organisation more financially efficient.[caption id="attachment_41725" align="alignleft" width="300"] The MMRT respond to emergencies in the wider Mournes area.[/caption]
“This is a pivotal investment in this life-saving service which has been in operation in the Mournes for decades providing much needed rescue and support services for those who recreate and enjoy the majesty and challenges presented by this important mountain range.
“This funding follows last year’s investment by the local rural development organisation (Down Rural Area Partnership) which resulted in the development and provision of 2 new high standard well equipped ambulances for rescue services in the Mournes.
“Commendations and congratulations are due to the skills, expertise, dedication and fortitude of the management and volunteers who provide so much time in life saving operations in the Mournes in conjunction with other emergency services such as the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Fire Service, Police Service, Irish Coastguard Agency in providing safety and security to all the visitors and users in the Mournes. I understand that this service has been extended to other recreational pursuits and now includes the Mountain Bike Trials in Castlewellan and Kilbroney Forest Parks as well.
“It is important that the Mourne Mountain Rescue Service along with the other rescue services (both land and sea) receive the recognition and acknowledgement which they deserve as they provide all of us with a gold plated service. Furthermore, it would be important that the Mourne Mountain Rescue Service is enabled to be further embedded in the community into perpetuity.
“I hope that their pivotal role is further recognised by the NI Executive and the new Newry and Mourne and Down Council, other agencies and the wider community”, added Ms Ritchie.]]>